Arousal at encoding, arousal at retrieval, interviewer support, and children's memory for a mild stressor
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The relations among children's physiological arousal at encoding and retrieval, interviewer-provided social support and children's memory for a mild stressor were examined in 109 five- and six-year-olds. The children came to a research laboratory and watched a fear eliciting video clip. A week later, their memory for the video clip was tested by either a supportive or nonsupportive interviewer. While watching the video and completing the memory interview, children's heart rate was monitored. Increased heart rate at encoding was associated with fewer incorrect responses. In contrast, increased heart rate at retrieval was associated with poorer memory, but only when the interviewer was nonsupportive. Heart rate was unrelated to memory when the interviewer was supportive. Results suggest that arousal at encoding and retrieval have different implications for children's memory for a mild stressor, particularly in nonsupportive interview contexts. Copyright 2006 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.